Cold Blank Talk "The Agenda"
Mon, 06 Aug 2012 15:05:56
"There's a theme to The Agenda," says Chris Gaspar of Cold Blank. "A lot of it has to do with some theories and beliefs we're into."
The Los Angeles electronic duo has got something much deeper and darker happening at the heart of its sound. Crucially, it's that essence which distinguishes them from the larger EDM landscape. There's no one out there that sounds like Cold Blank, and that's why The Agenda is so utterly raw, real, and refreshing. Their songs shift from heavy bass into hypnotic hooks, yielding an Agenda worth sticking to.
In this exclusive interview with ARTISTdirect.com editor in chief Rick Florino, Chris Gaspar and Manny Luquin of Cold Blank talk The Agenda and so much more.
What's the story behind "Onslaught" [Featuring Andy Taylor]?
Chris Gaspar: Basically, the purpose of "Onslaught" was to bring in a little bit of a French house vibe. I'm heavily influenced by Daft Punk and a lot of the French house guys. I wanted to take our style of electro and blend it with that. It sounds very futuristic bringing those two together. We were also going for something that was like Tron, but at the same time had the heavy hitting sound we're known for. We dissected samples from tracks we like and started exploring some '70s disco and funk. Then, we found a few guitar samples here and there to work with. It call came together from there. We put up a 30-second sample of "Onslaught", and Andy Taylor approached us and said he wanted to work with us. Since he liked it, we thought it would be a good idea to invite him to play something on the track. He was really into it, and he ended up being featured on it.
How did Andy fit into the track?
Chris Gaspar: The song was done, and it had guitar samples in it. It's a little more structured now than it is before. It was more of a big room electro banger, and now it has the structure to be an iPod song you can bump in your car or listen to on your headphones. It sounds a lot better and there's more life to it. Andy's guitar parts fit in perfectly. He shredded his way in, and we work together really well.
Where did "Deception" [Featuring Blake Miller] come from?
Manny Luquin: Blake Miller [Moving Units] has always been around Cold Blank. The first time I met Chris was at my birthday party. I had Blake performing there.
Chris Gaspar: I've been a fan of Blake Miller and Moving Units for as long as I can remember. He was one of the first people I saw make that transition away from the indie rock and dance punk scene and move towards doing a DJ set. I met Manny that night. We've played with Blake over the years in Mexico, and we've opened for Moving Units a few times. We approached him to do vocals on the track because he hasn't done that in a while. He's got a reputation in L.A. We were glad we could bring a twist to his voice and merge our styles. We performed "Deception" live at Avalon in February, and Blake came out and sang. It was the highlight of the night. Everyone in the crowd went wild. The vibe is there.
What artists shaped you?
Chris Gaspar: There's a very eclectic mix of people who have influenced us. It's all over the place. Growing up, I was really into Weezer and System of a Down. I think that's where the heavy side comes from. However, my parents would be bumping disco at the house, and I grew up on that as well. I got really into bands like The Rapture and The Faint who merged indie rock and dance. Little by little, I started to transition into electronic music like Calvin Harris and Daft Punk. When Justice came out, I started to really get into it.
Manny Luquin: I was influenced by classic rock and a lot of heavy metal. Nine Inch Nails was big for me. I think Trent Reznor is pretty badass. It's so incredible he produced all of those original tracks by himself. That's what got me into him. I dig MSTRKRFT and The Bloody Beetroots too.
Chris Gaspar: We're working on a few new originals and some remixes. There's a lot more to come.
Have you heard Cold Blank? Get The Agenda here!